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Journal of agricultural and food chemistry

Olfactory cues from different plant species in host selection by female pea moths.


PMID 25675276

Abstract

In herbivorous insects specialized on few plant species, attraction to host odor may be mediated by volatiles common to all host species, by specific compounds, or combinations of both. The pea moth Cydia nigricana is an important pest of the pea. Volatile signatures of four host plant species were studied to identify compounds involved in pea moth host selection and to improve previously reported attractive volatile blends. P. sativum and alternative Fabaceae host species were compared regarding female attraction, oviposition, and larval performance. Pea moth females were strongly attracted to the sweet pea Lathyrus odoratus, but larval performance on that species was moderate. Chemical analyses of sweet pea odor and electrophysiological responses of moth antennae led to identification of seven sweet-pea-specific compounds and ten compounds common to all tested host species. Blends of these specific and common cues were highly attractive to mated pea moth females in wind tunnel and field experiments.

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